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Table of Contents

Biography

AbstractImportant DatesOccupationPlacesSubjects

Relationships

PeopleInstitutions

Resources

Archival as AuthorArchival as SubjectPublished as AuthorPublished as Subject

David Locke Webster

Photo

Dates

November 6, 1888 – December 17, 1976

Authorized Form of Name

Webster, David Locke, 1888-1976

Biography

Abstract

PhD, Harvard (1913); Assistant Professor of Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); Professor of Physics and Executive Head of the Department of Physics, Stanford University; founding member and former President, American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT). Research in x-rays, microwaves and atomic physics.

Important Dates

November 6, 1888Birth, Boston (Mass.).

1910Obtained AB, Harvard University, Cambridge (Mass.).

1910 – 1917Instructor in Mathematics (1910-1911), Assistant in Physics (1911-1915) and Instructor in Physics (1915-1917), Harvard University, Cambridge (Mass.).

1913Obtained PhD (Physics), Harvard University, Cambridge (Mass.).

1917 – 1919Researcher, U.S. Army Air Service.

1919 – 1920Assistant Professor of Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

1920 – 1954Professor of Physics (1920-1954) and Executive Head, Department of Physics (1920-1941), Stanford University, Stanford (Calif.).

1923Member, National Academy of Sciences.

1929 – 1948Member, Board of Editors, "Review of Modern Physics.".

1933 – 1935Member, Board of Editors, "American Physics Teacher.".

1933 – 1937Vice President (1933-1934) and President (1935-1937), American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT).

1941Civilian with the U. S. Army Air Forces (USAAF), Civil Aeronautics Administration.

1942Head physicist, Signal Corps, U.S. Army.

1942Consultant, National Defense Research Committee.

1942 – 1943Head Physicist, Ordnance Department, U.S. Army.

1943 – 1950Chief Physicist (1943-1945), and consultant (1945-1950), U. S. Army.

1954 – 1976Emeritus Professor of physics, Stanford University, Stanford (Calif.).

1961 – 1963Consultant, Hawaii Institute of Geophysics.

1962 – 1974Consultant, Ames Research Center, National Aeronatuics and Space Administration (NASA).

December 17, 1976Death.

Occupation

Atomic physicist and physics educator.

Places

Birth

Boston (Mass.)

Undergraduate Education

Cambridge (Mass.)

Graduate Education

Cambridge (Mass.)

Employment

Cambridge (Mass.)

Stanford (Calif.)

Subjects

Aircraft.

Atomic and molecular physics.

Physics -- Study and teaching.

Rockets (Aeronautics).

X-rays.

Relationships

People

Family

Ross, Olive Durbin

Second wife, married September 1951.

Webster, Andrew Gerrish

Father.

Webster, Cutler

Son.

Webster, David Locke, Jr.

Son.

Webster, Harrison

Brother.

Webster, Lizzie Florence Briggs

Mother.

Webster, Nancy

Daughter.

Wheelwright, Helen Webster

Daughter.

Woodman, Anna Cutler

First wife, married June 1912.

Advisors & Collaborators

Clark, Harry

Collaborated on experiments in x-rays.

Compton, K. T. (Karl Taylor), 1887-1954

Collaborated in founding of American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT).

Dodge, Homer L. (Homer Levi), 1887-1983

Collaborated in founding of the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT).

Drew, Elmer Reginald

Co-wrote the textbook "General Physics for Colleges."

Farwell, Hermon W.

Co-wrote the textbook "General Physics for Colleges."

Lyman, Theodore, 1874-1954

PhD advisor at Harvard University, "I. On an electromagnetic theory of gravitation. II. On the existence and properties of the ether," and both employed at Harvard University.

Page, Leigh, 1884-

Co-wrote "A general survey of the present status of the atomic structure problem."

Webb, William S. (William Snyder), 1882-1964

Collaborated in founding of the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT).

Colleagues

Adelberger, Eric G.

Both employed at Stanford University. Both employed at Stanford University.

Bardeen, William A.

Both employed at Stanford University.

Beasley, Malcolm

Both employed at Stanford University.

Bloch, Felix, 1905-

Both employed at Stanford University.

Bradbury, Norris, 1909-1997

Both employed at Stanford University.

Bridgman, P. W. (Percy Williams), 1882-1961

Both employed at Harvard University.

Chodorow, Marvin

Both employed at Stanford University.

Culp, Thomas B.

Did military work together.

Dorfan, Jonathan

Both employed at Stanford University.

Drell, Sidney D. (Sidney David), 1926-

Both employed at Stanford University.

Duff, A. Wilmer (Alexander Wilmer), 1864-

Did military work together.

Fairbank, William Martin, 1917-1989

Both employed at Stanford University.

Fetter, Alexander L., 1937-

Both employed at Stanford University.

Freedman, Stuart J.

Both employed at Stanford University.

Friedman, Jerome I. (Jerome Isaac), 1930-

Both employed at Stanford University.

Hahn, E. L. (Erwin Louis), 1921-

Both employed at Stanford University.

Hänsch, T. W. (Theo W.), 1941-

Both employed at Stanford University.

Hansen, W. W. (William Webster), 1909-1949

Both employed at Stanford University.

Henley, Ernest M.

Both employed at Stanford University.

Hofstadter, Robert, 1915-1990

Both employed at Stanford University.

Jaffe, Arthur, 1937-

Both employed at Stanford University.

Kendall, Henry W. (Henry Way), 1926-1999

Both employed at Stanford University.

Kent, R. H. (Robert Harrington), 1886-1961

Both employed at Harvard University.

Kirkpatrick, Paul

Both employed at Stanford University.

Lamb, Willis E. (Willis Eugene), 1913-2008

Both employed at Stanford University.

Mason, Max, 1877-1961

Both employed at Harvard University.

Mendenhall, Charles E. (Charles Elwood), 1872-1935

Did military work together.

Meyerhof, Walter E. (Walter Ernst), 1922-

Both employed at Stanford University.

Millikan, Robert Andrews, 1868-1953

Served under Millikan as a lieutenant in Science and Research Division of U.S. Army Signal Corps.

Panofsky, Wolfgang K. H. (Wolfgang Kurt Hermann), 1919-2007

Both employed at Stanford University.

Pierce, George Washington, 1872-1956

Both employed at Harvard University.

Rosenbluth, M. N.

Both employed at Stanford University.

Ross, Perley A.

Both employed at Stanford University.

Schiff, Leonard I. (Leonard Isaac), 1915-1971

Both employed at Stanford University.

Schwartz, Melvin, 1932-2006

Both employed at Stanford University.

Van Vleck, J. H. (John Hasbrouck), 1899-1980

Both employed at Stanford University.

Varian, Russell Harrison, 1898-1959

Both employed at Stanford University.

Varian, Sigurd Fergus, 1901-1961

Both employed at Stanford University.

Wentzel, Gregor, 1898-1978

Both employed at Stanford University.

Additional

Alksne, Alberta Y.

Companion in later life.

Bartlett, Albert A.

Byerly, William Elwood, 1849-1935.

Took courses from Byerly at Harvard University.

Compton, Arthur Holly, 1892-1962

Coolidge, Julian Lowell, 1873-1954

Took courses from Coolidge at Harvard University.

Cope, Thomas D. (Thomas Darlington)

Duane, William, 1872-1935

Greenhall, James J.

High school physics teacher who influenced Webster to pursue a career in physics.

Harrison, George Russell, 1898-1979

Student at Stanford University.

Hunt, Franklin

Student at Stanford University.

Huntington, E. V. (Edward Vermilye), 1874-1952

Took courses from Huntington at Harvard University.

Klopsteg, Paul E. (Paul Ernest), 1889-

Lemon, Harvey Brace, 1885-

Loeb, Leonard B. (Leonard Benedict), 1891-

Loomis, F. W. (Francis Wheeler), 1889-1976

Students at Harvard University together.

Lorentz, H. A. (Hendrik Antoon), 1853-1928

Osgood, William F. (William Fogg), 1864-1943

Took courses from Osgood at Harvard University.

Palmer, Frederic, 1878-1967

Attended Harvard together and both held office in the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT).

Peirce, B. O. (Benjamin Osgood), 1854-1914

Took courses from Peirce at Harvard University.

Planck, Max, 1858-1947

Reynolds, Wallace B.

Richtmyer, F. K. (Floyd Karker), 1881-1939

Sabine, Wallace Clement

Took courses from Sabine at Harvard University.

States, M. N. (Marshall Ney)

Sutton, Richard Manliffe, 1900-1966

Taylor, Lloyd William, 1893-1948

Wheelwright, George W., III

Wood, Robert Williams, 1868-1955

Woodyard, John R., 1904-1981

Institutions

Major Positions

Ames Research Center

Consultant.

Harvard University. Department of Mathematics

Instructor in Mathematics.

Harvard University. Department of Physics

Obtained AB and PhD in Physics. Assistant in Physics and Instructor in Physics.

Hawaii Institute of Geophysics

Consultant.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Physics

Assistant Professor of Physics.

Stanford University. Department of Physics

Professor of Physics; Executive Head, Department of Physics; and Emeritus Professor of Physics.

United States. Army

Chief Physicist and Consultant.

United States. Army Air Forces

Civilian, Civil Aeronautics Division.

United States. Army. Air Service

Researcher.

United States. Army. Ordnance Department

Head Physicist.

United States. Army. Signal Corps

Head Physicist.

United States. Office of Scientific Research and Development. National Defense Research Committee

Consultant.

Professional Activities & Affiliations

American Academy of Arts and Sciences

American Association of Physics Teachers

Vice President and President.

American Philosophical Society

American Physical Society

National Academy of Sciences (U.S.)

Phi Beta Kappa

United States. National Aeronautics and Space Administration

University of Michigan. Department of Physics

Resources

Archival Resources

Author

American Association of Physics Teachers records of David Locke Webster, 1930-1958.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

David Locke Webster correspondence concerning William Duane, 1954-1970.

Department of Special Collections and University Archives

Stanford University

Stanford, CA 94305, USA

David Locke Webster papers, 1914-1966.

Department of Special Collections and University Archives

Stanford University

Stanford, CA 94305, USA

David Locke Webster papers, 1915-1973.

Department of Special Collections and University Archives

Stanford University

Stanford, CA 94305, USA

Oral history interview with David Locke Webster, 1963 January 26.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with David Locke Webster, 1964 May 21.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Preliminary experiments on the distribution of ionizing power in the tungsten x-ray spectrum: research notebook, 1915.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Reminiscences of a Rolling Stone [autobiography], 1977.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Reminiscences of David Locke Webster : oral history, 1963.

Oral History Research Office

Columbia University

Box 20, Room 801 Butler Library, New York, NY 10027, USA

Subject

AAPT records of early history, 1929-1966.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with John R. Woodyard, 1974 October 18 and 1975 December 17.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with John R. Woodyard: Cyclotron and Klystron development: oral history transcript, 1974 October 18 and 1975 December 17.

The Bancroft Library

University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, CA, 94720-6000, USA

Oral history interview with Leonard B. Loeb, 1962 August 7.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Marshall Ney States, 1963 January 27.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Wallace B. Reynolds, 1975 December 12.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Wallace B. Reynolds, 1975 December 12.

The Bancroft Library

University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, CA, 94720-6000, USA

Papers of physicists and astronomers in Hoover Library, 1918-1965.

Herbert Hoover Presidential Library

West Branch, IA 52358, USA

Stanford University Department of Physics records, 1937-1949.

Department of Special Collections and University Archives

Stanford University

Stanford, CA 94305, USA

Stanford University, School of Engineering, Dean's Office records, 1915-1969 (inclusive), 1925-1955 (bulk).

Department of Special Collections and University Archives

Stanford University

Stanford, CA 94305, USA

William W. Hansen papers, 1925-1974.

Department of Special Collections and University Archives

Stanford University

Stanford, CA 94305, USA

Published Resources

Author

A general survey of the present status of the atomic structure problem : Report of the Committee on Atomic Structure of the National Research Council

A general survey of the present status of the atomic structure problem [microform] : Report of the Committee on Atomic Structure of the National Research Council

General physics for colleges

Subject

David L. Webster Physics Today obituary